It’s 11 a.m. on the rooftop of the Kigali Public Library. Members of the press and a few technology enthusiasts in town gather at the Innovation Village for the launch of Transform Africa Summit 2015 digital platforms.

As ICT minister Jean Philbert Nsengimana takes stage, he does not wait: “Please grab the cards you found on your seats,” he says, “and scan the [QR](javascript:void(0)) code to access the website we’re launching.”

He then refers to a countdown displayed on the site and says, “In exactly 26 days, 12 hours, 28 minutes and 20 seconds, we are going to host yet another exciting summit.”

Perhaps best positioned, he breaks into a rhetoric of a brief, but somewhat adequate, clear background: what Transform Africa Summit is all about – to bring decision makes in one place, put ICT at the centre of Africa’s social and economic transformation.

The minister insists, this time, Rwanda wants “to run a paperless conference, in line with our vision to harness technology in the global environment protection efforts.” And an Android application is currently under-development to ease the process of sharing information and updates on events related to the summit next month.

Transform Africa Summit 2015, which happens on 19-21 October, is a big deal. It will attract over 2,500 participants from around Africa and other continents, including heads of state from more than 10 African countries.

Top political and business leaders will travel to Rwanda to share experience and renew their commitments towards accelerating and sustaining Africa’s ongoing digital revolution, officials in Kigali say.

What to expect this year? The website explains:

  1. A platform for dialogue and deal making between governments and the private sector on technology solutions for Africa’s development
  2. A space for young innovators from African and beyond to showcase their potentials
  3. Member countries showcasing their achievements in Digital Innovation since TAS 2013
  4. Rwanda sharing experiences of how ICTs have impacted lives
  5. Recognising exemplary innovations which prove that through technology, Africa’s socio-economic transformation can become a reality

Note that registration for the summit is open to anyone interested, including people from the academia, policy makers and business people from the private sector.

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